Creating A Consumer-Oriented Distribution System

1. Recent Changes Observed in Japanese Distribution System

Japan's traditional system of distributing goods within its domestic market is currently undergoing fundamental change on an unprecedented scale. Prices are coming down and the emergence of new approaches to distribution is encouraging. Competition is heating up within and among industries, prompting the formation of new manufacturer-retailer alliances, and new industry relationships. The impact of these developments has spread beyond the distribution industry to the manufacturing and transportation industries, affecting capital goods, producer's goods and services, and even to the larger global business community. Consumers are now in a far stronger position to affect market behavior in making choices for the first time from a wide range of goods and services, based on issues of price and quality. This represents truly structural change in Japan's distribution system.

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